2019 Summer Program FAQ

What would I gain from participating in the Fellowship?

  • Training in fundamental campaign, organizing, and leadership skills
  • Relationships with other campus climate organizers across the country
  • Individualized mentorship opportunities and guidance on your campaign and your growth as an organizer
  • Connections with professionals working on climate and energy issues
  • Opportunity to join our community organizing summer program in Boston!

Who is the Fellowship for?

  • Current undergraduate students attending school at college in the United States, who will still be in school in Fall 2019.
  • Students involved in fossil fuel divestment campaigns on their campuses.
    • Are you involved in a different divestment campaign and interested in the Fellowship? We may be able to accommodate you! Please contact Gracie Brett at gracie@betterfutureproject.org. While the focus is on fossil fuel divestment campaigns, many of the skills are applicable to other divestment campaigns.  
  • Students who are newer to organizing, may not have leadership positions in their campaigns yet, and/or are looking to “level up” their organizing. First- and second-years are especially encouraged to apply!
  • Students who are passionate about developing a national climate movement through mentorship and relationship building.
  • Students who identify as people of color, indigenous, first generation, low-income, LGB, trans, nonbinary, or disabled, and students who come from communities currently impacted by climate and environmental injustice. Because Divest Ed aims to have the divestment movement be represented by those first and worst impacted by climate change, the fellowship will prioritize students who share such marginalized identities and experiences.

What would I work on in the summer program?

Fellows will spend part of their time planning 2019-20 coordination of the national fossil fuel divestment movement, and the other part will be spent working directly with 350 Mass for a Better Future on local or statewide climate action campaigns to gain hands-on community organizing experience. The summer program may involve planning fall 2019 divestment actions or trainings, attending community meetings, having strategy sessions, doing outreach, organizing events, and making relationships with local community organizers. In the 2016 summer program, participants played a key role in organizing the 4-day, 43-mile #PeopleOverPipelines march from Medway to the State House covered by the Boston Globe and WBUR. You can see them in action here.

What are the summer program requirements?

Attendance of the entire kickoff training retreat is required. Fellows will work in our office 3 days a week (8 hours/day) plus additional events or meetings. Time commitment is between 24-30 hours per week. Exceptions to the work schedule may be made rarely on a case-by-case basis. The exact hours are subject to change, but are likely to be Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10am-6pm.

Key dates:

  • June Training Retreat: Monday-Friday, June 10-14, 2019
  • First day in office: Monday, June 17, 2019
  • Last day of program: Friday, August 9, 2019

Does it cost any money to participate in the summer program?

No, there is no charge to participate. However, you will be expected to set a fundraising goal (with support from our team to reach it). You will also be expected to provide your own transportation to and from the kickoff training retreat.

Is the summer program paid?

Stipends of up to $100 per week (aside from the June training retreat where food and lodging are provided) are available upon request for food and transportation costs. You can apply for additional financial assistance upon acceptance.

What makes this summer program different from other programs?

This program is a mix of leadership development and firsthand experience. As you are being trained and coached, you will also have the chance to experience community organizing with our partners.

You will not be working in isolation. You will have the benefit of learning and working with a cohort of peers who share your interest in grassroots climate action. Our past participants have continued to hold deep relationships and share knowledge with each other long after the program’s end.

In addition to providing a resume boost, our priority is to create a rich and fun experience. We invest in a weeklong training retreat to make sure that we start the program with relationship building and great memories.

Unlike other youth leadership development programs, this program is at no cost to you! We also offer stipends and additional financial assistance.

Can I attend classes or have another job during the program?

Yes, you can attend classes or have another job as long as you are still able to fulfill the program requirements. If you plan to do so, we will ask you to note that in February 2019 when we begin filling spots for the summer program.

Where is the program located?

The work days will be spent at our office in Harvard Square, Cambridge. Other events and meetings will be in the greater Boston area or otherwise accessible by public transit.

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